Old habits die hard, and as much as the continuous progress wants us to change we still fight these artificial urges. We are builders, makers, do-it-yourselfers; or, at least, the heirs of some. My grandfather used to do by himself all kinds of stuff around house – masonry, carpentry, agriculture and much more – he had built his own bed, sofas, fireplace; even his own motorcycle, from the spare parts of two different models bought in the junkyard.
Me, I’m not a builder, but I do love getting things done once in a while, especially when I get to save a few bucks. Call me cheap, but I really don’t see the point on spending 30 bucks for a laptop sleeve I can make on my own for less than 1$. For less than 10 cents even.
Here’s the complete detail on How I Did it:
- Get the material: This was the hardest, but also the cheapest thing on the list. You need to get hold of a piece of thick textile material you fancy. The rough size is of 40*60 cm, meaning around 2.5 times the dimensions of a A4 sheet of paper. For me, this took the longest time, cause I wanted something modern and thick at the same time. Eventually I found it in the material used to make packages in a local clothes depot. Did I mention it was cheap? It was free, a minor gift from a relative with connections.
- The only hard part – getting the right dimensions for the piece of cloth. A MacBook has the size 325 x 227 x 27.5 mm (sorry US visitors, they are in metric), so according to your design you should pick the right ones. I went for an envelope bag model, which means a piece of material of 50 cm length and 40 cm width. The extra material is just to make sure we have enough and to make for nice rounded edges.
- The laborious part – You fold the material in two, splitting the length in half. The trick is to do it with the backside showing up. With a needle and a string or, much better, a sewing machine, you just go ahead and sew the margins, leaving about half a centimeter outside(or as much as you need to make sure your laptop still fits). The expert tip? Use a bit more material in the first place – you just cut the remaining parts away, once the sewing is done.
- The finishing part – go ahead and cut the outside pieces of material and, for a nice touch, gently saw the margins individually for a nicer look.
- Turn the sleeve inside out, the front of the material on the outside. Looking good, isn’t it?
Bored already? I bet you are. Still, as you saw, anyone can make their own laptop sleeve. It takes about half an hour and saves you tens of dollars. Not to mention the exciting feeling of having cheated the system, having proven that you can do stuff for yourself. Did I mention the elated feeling of the artist polishing up his masterpiece?
If my lame do-it-yourself tutorial didn’t convince you, there is still hope. Take a look over the instructables for tutorials on making your own laptop sleeve(also check the related ones) or the Makezine page of ideas on making one from a sweater or Ikea towel.